386 of 430 people found the following review helpful
Good but not for everyone
, June 24, 2013
This review is from: Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting (Paperback)
I wanted to love this book but it's not for us. I think it might resonate really well with people into "attachment parenting" and think that should be mentioned in the description. It might fall short with some very strong willed children though, like mine. At least, that's what I found when I tried a few suggestions.
The positives of this book is that it does a good job of highlighting the need for the parent to calm down. There are good tips. It made an important point that other parenting books do not, such as, it's alright to take a moment (or 10!) to calm down before addressing the problem. Many other parenting books say you need to address the problem immediately so the child knows exactly why consequences are happening. It gives some good tips about knowing how your child reacts to certain situations and have the foresight to diffuse them before the problem occurs. It promotes empathy, which can only help your relationship. I found I already do a lot of empathizing with my child.
Where I have the problem is the constant "making light" of problems or trying to turn them into a game in order redirect the behavior. This might work with some kids but not mine. In one example, a child wants the parent to move from a particular spot on the couch and the parent is supposed to make fun and games with the child... but not move from the spot. That only works with my daughter to a point. She would not become distracted, she would play for a while but then become serious and reassert her laser beam focus. Another example is about spitting, instead of consequences for spitting in the house the solution was to take the child outside to make a game of spitting out there. Like, "Oh, haha, look I can spit further than you!" Yeah, I can just see myself and daughter on the front steps of our house spitting all over. I somehow don't think that highlights what a bad thing spitting is and would really give my kid the green light that it's ok. She's "strong willed" and while that example would let her know it's ok to do it outside... she would quickly push her boundaries and do it inside again.
I think this approach would probably work very well with my younger daughter who is more laid back and open to suggestion. However, I don't think it will fly with my older strong willed one.
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